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Clinical Trial ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Neurol. | doi: 10.3389/fneur.2019.01084

Characterization of intestinal microbiota and probiotics treatment in children with autism spectrum disorders in China

 Ying Han1*,  Manman Niu1, 2,  Qinrui Li1, 3, Jishui Zhang4, Fang Wen4, Weili Dang5, Guiqin Duan6, Haifeng Li7, Wencong Ruan7, Pingri Yang7, Chunrong Guan8,  Huiling Tian9, Xiaoqing Gao9, Shaobin Zhang10 and Fangfang Yuan11
  • 1Peking University First Hospital, China
  • 2Beijing Tiantan Hospital, Capital Medical University, China
  • 3Peking University People's Hospital, China
  • 4Beijing Children’s Hospital, Capital Medical University, China
  • 5First Affiliated Hospital of Henan University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, China
  • 6Third Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University, China
  • 7Children's Hospital, School of Medicine, ZheJiang University, China
  • 8Jining City Rencheng District Maternal and Child Health Hospital, China
  • 9Linyi City Women and Children Hospital, China
  • 10Independent researcher, China
  • 11Xinxiang Central Hospital, China

Background: Most previous studies have found that human intestinal microbiota affect the symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), especially gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms, but there is limited data of non-western ethnicity. Probiotics can reconstitute the host intestinal microbiota and strengthen gastrointestinal function, whereas it lacks clinical data proving the effect of probiotics treatment for ASD.
Methods: This study explored the significant differences between ASD and neurotypical (NT), and the improvement of applied behavior analysis (ABA) training in combination with probiotics versus ABA training only.
Results: We found significant differences between the ASD group and the NT group in the evenness of the intestinal microbiota and the relative abundance of the bacterial phyla and genus. At the phylum level, relative abundance of Bacteroidetes in the ASD group was significantly lower than in the NT group. At the genus level, the relative abundance of Bacteroides, Bifidobacterium, Ruminococcus, Roseburia, and Blautia in the ASD group was significantly lower than that in the NT group. After 4-week ABA training program in combination with probiotics treatment, the ATEC and GI scores decreased more than the control group with ABA training only.
Conclusion: Our findings suggest that intestinal microbiota is different between the NT children and the ASD children with or without GI. In combination with ABA training, probiotics treatment can bring more benefit to ASD children. Clinical trials with a more rigorous design and larger sample size are indispensable for further validation.

Keywords: Autism Spectrum Disorder, intestinal microbiota, Probiotics treatment, Children, China

Received: 07 Aug 2019; Accepted: 26 Sep 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Han, Niu, Li, Zhang, Wen, Dang, Duan, Li, Ruan, Yang, Guan, Tian, Gao, Zhang and Yuan. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Mx. Ying Han, Peking University First Hospital, Beijing, China,